Hewlett-Packard has undercut Epson's offering in the niche CAD and Graphic artist A3 colour printer market by $7000 with its Designjet Colourpro CAD and GA printers which will sell for less than $8000.
The HP Designjet Colourpros reproduce high-quality images costing around $1.10 per page which artists can proof then send to print, cutting out the go-to-film stage. The cost per page using the previous technology was around $25 a page, HP's marketing development manager Nelson Ferrari claimed.
`We believe the market is ready for our products because of its size - around 2500 printers a year - and we have a product that beats the psychological barrier of $10,000.'
Ferrari said HP has an established channel in the market yet hinted the vendor might enlist more resellers that could value add with services.
HP is also moving into the consumer market in numbers with the launch of a new range of photo quality double-sided printers that use next-generation PhotoREt3 technology offering consumers high resolution and speed.
The PhotoREt3 technology layers three colours in five picolitre drops at 29 drops per dot. The result is a wider range of colours and tones and sharper,clearer images, according to HP.
HP's market development man-ager, Peter Leihn, claimed that with PhotoREt3 technology the consumer can print photo quality at a faster speed than any other printer on the market.
Leihn explained HP engineers have designed products based on usage criteria not purchase criteria in the past. He said resellers have found this philosophy a stumbling block in a sale as consumers want high-resolution printers but soon realise high resolution generates slower printing.
`With the three new printers - Deskjet 970Cxi, the Photosmart P0100 and the P1100 - PhotoREt3 gives the consumer a choice. They can choose the high-resolution mode that prints 2400 x 1200 or they can go with the PhotoREt3 technology which still produces high-quality images, but prints faster.